SGU Episode 218

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SGU Episode 218
September 23rd 2009
Panamamonster.jpg
SGU 217 SGU 219
Skeptical Rogues
S: Steven Novella
R: Rebecca Watson
B: Bob Novella
J: Jay Novella
E: Evan Bernstein


Quote of the Week
'Yo Oprah, I'm really happy for you, and I'm gonna let you finish, but Jenny McCarthy is one of the biggest idiots of all time.'
Kanye West (a parody of the MTV Music Awards)
Links
Download Podcast
Show Notes


Introduction[edit]

You're listening to the Skeptics' Guide to the Universe, your escape to reality.

News Items ()[edit]

Raptorex ()[edit]

Bill Maher Antiscience ()[edit]

Panama Monster ()[edit]

Interview with Michael Vassar (26:13)[edit]

S: We are joined now by Michale Vasser. Michael, welcome to the Skeptic's Guide.

M: Yes, nice to speak to you. I'm glad to be here.

S: Michael is the president of the Singularity Institute for Artificial Intelligence, and you are widely published on futurist.com, kurzweilai.net, you're also involved with the Lifeboat Foundation website, you've published there as well. And, we're talking today because next weekend, the week after this podcast comes out, is a conference called the singularity summit. Can you tell us about that?

M: Okay. The Singularity Institute has an annual event called the Singularity Summit. We had the first one in 2006. It has had a great number of prominent speakers over the years, including Hofstadter, and Rodney Brooks, Peter Norvig, The CTO of Intel, Justin Rattner. And this year we're going to have Ray Kurzweil, and Aubrey DeGray, David Tralmbers, Stephen Wolfram, and a number of other pretty prominent scientists.

S: Mm-hm. It's also the first year it's going to be on the east coast, right?

Science or Fiction ()[edit]

Item # 1: A new study finds that use of texting, or so-called chat-speak, is significantly correlated with poorer spelling ability in students. Don't forget to check the box to tell us which one was the Fiction. Item # 2: New research finds that mortality rates increase by 6% in UK hospitals in the first week of August – when new doctors begin training. Item # 3: A meta-analysis finds that community smoking bans decrease heart attack admissions by 36% at three years.

Who's That Noisy ()[edit]

  • Answer to last week: translation of brain wave activity into sound

Quote of the Week ()[edit]

'Yo Oprah, I'm really happy for you, and I'm gonna let you finish, but Jenny McCarthy is one of the biggest idiots of all time.' - Kanye West (a parody of the MTV Music Awards)

S: The Skeptics' Guide to the Universe is produced by the New England Skeptical Society in association with the James Randi Educational Foundation and skepchick.org. For more information on this and other episodes, please visit our website at www.theskepticsguide.org. For questions, suggestions and other feedback, please use the 'contact us' form on the website, or send an email to 'info @ theSkepticsGuide.org'. If you enjoyed this episode, then please help us to spread the word by voting for us on Digg, or leaving us a review on iTunes. You can find links to these sites and others through our homepage. 'Theorem' is produced by Kineto, and is used with permission.

References[edit]


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